Thoughts from a Sixth Grader

So this weekend, because I’m such an awesome sister, I’m letting my little brother spend the night at my place. For those who don’t actually know me in real life, this is Hunter:

"What do you mean, 'Take a goofy picture'?"- Hunter

“What do you mean, ‘Take a goofy picture’?”- Hunter

He’s in sixth grade and he’s pretty cool. I thought it might be interesting to ask his opinions on various important – and some not-so-important – questions.

Here’s how it all went down:

Awkward Redhead: How are you liking sixth grade so far? 

Hunter: It’s pretty good. There’s more freedom compared to elementary school.

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AR: Favorite subject in school?

H: Mmmm… probably World Cultures. The teacher, Mrs. Stevens is cool because she’s funny. It makes the class feel like it’s only five minutes.

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AR: Favorite Restaurant?

H: I’d probably have to say Johnny Carinos. Their Bowtie Festival is probably my favorite food. And they have bread there! haha

AR: What do you like to do in your free time? 

H: Probably watch sports or play the PS3

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AR: Beyonce or Lady Gaga? 

H: uhh… I don’t know… maybe Beyonce because I know more of her songs?

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AR: What movie do you think everyone needs to see?

H: Captain America: The Winter Soldier. That movie was so good, my favorite of Marvel’s so far. It’s action-packed, I guess you would say, and because I said so.

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AR: What’s your favorite TV show right now? 

H: The Amazing World of Gumball. It’s very funny, in my opinion. Gumball, himself, is the person I like the best. He kind of acts like me, he likes to do funny things- but in a better way. I probably wouldn’t want to have blue skin like him though, I’d look like a smurf.

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AR: What is the funniest thing you’ve ever seen on TV or in the movies?

H: In Kung Pow, the voice-over things making fun of the movie. I don’t even get what the movie was supposed to be like, but it was funny.

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AR: Do you have a special memory that involves a movie or TV show? 

H: I like when dad, you, and I have seen a movie more than once and we can make fun of it, Like Mystery Science Theater 3000. It kind of makes the movie into something new and different.

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AR: Is there a TV show or movie coming out soon that you’re excited about? 

H: Probably the new Star Wars movie. Oh, and apparently Full House is coming back, that’s going to be cool. Let’s look that up- “Full House is returning…”

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AR: If you could make a movie or TV show, what would it be about? 

H: Umm… a documentary about the 2004- 2005 Astros. There are about 4 of the best players of MLB history on that team that year- Craig Biggio (who set a record), Lance Berkman, Roy Oswalt, Jeff Bagwell. They even made the World Series that year, but they lost to the White Sox, unfortunately. And all after that season, all of the players either retired or moved. All 4 players left the Astros and then they were stuck in a sinkhole… and now we’re stuck in it.

NLCS ASTROS CARDS GAME6

If I could make another documentary, it’d be about the 1994-1995 Rockets. Rudy T., Hakeem Olajuwon, so many great players. Hakeem could finish it! Both of those years they won the championship. The Rockets were the only Houston team to win a final title in their sport. None of our teams have done it except for them.

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AR: Is there a book that you’ve read that would make a good movie? 

H: Probably the one I’m reading now. It’s called Zoo Break, by Gordon Korman, it’s these three kids, this girl, Savannah, who loves animals. She has monkey that she loves so much. Her two friends notice one day that her monkey isn’t there and she freaks out. The next day they go on a field trip to a stinky, run-down zoo, and they find a monkey that looks exactly like her monkey, though the zoo owner says that it’s not. And whenever she goes back home, she finds a banana peel that says something like “kidnapped,” so now she’s mad at all of these people and she can’t get the monkey back. So her and her to friends, Ben and Griffin, gather a team of people to try to break in to the zoo and get the monkey back. It’s pretty good, so far in my opinion. I’m not finished with it yet, I’ve still probably got 120 pages to read, but I like it.

Zoobreak

That would be a job that would be cool to do- if I don’t get a job in sports- to maybe go and make some of my favorite books into movies. That’d be cool.

AR: Tell me a joke:

H: So I stepped on a cornflake, does that count me as a cereal killer?cereal

or maybe-

Knock knock.

Who’s there? 

Ya

Ya Who? 

Actually I prefer Google…

dwight-hahaha-o

AR: Any parting words of advice? 

H: I like the quote that Ellen makes at the end of her Friday shows, “Have a good weekend, be kind to one another.” I just like that phrase, “be kind to one another,” it’s nice. You can do it, like, dash Ellen DeGeneres…

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Well there you have it, folks. If you were curious what a sixth grader thought about, now you know. Now if you’ll excuse me, I’m showing him the pop culture gem that is National Treasure. He’s never seen it before, and I’ve got a DC trip to plan.

My to-do list is getting pretty full...

My to-do list is getting pretty full…

Like Hunter and Ellen say- be kind to one another! ‘Til next time!

What. A. Day.

At what point in the day does one look at the day’s events and just think, “Well, I think I’ll just go back to bed…”? Because that seems like the kind of day I’ve had. From the ridiculous morning commute featuring drivers that can only be described with four-letter words of which my mom would not approve, a found hole in a favorite cardigan, and the complete annihilation of my DVR, it seems that the universe (or what have you) has been increasingly determined to tell me I should not have left my bed this morning.

eye roll for dayssss

eye roll for dayssss

There were some small respites, though, from my terrible, horrible, no good, very bad day, which are probably owed some thanks.

 

The first “thank you” is reserved for the nice Sephora cast member (yes, that is what they call their employees, I googled it).

Let me tell you, one reader from Vermont, the struggle to find auburn color eyebrow pencils is about as real as it can get. I recognize that that may be the most first-world-y, white girl problem sentence I have ever written, but it’s true. Now, my sister’s eyebrow game is strong (don’t tell her I said that), but my eyebrow game is not. YouTube and Pinterest are filled with beautiful, brunette and blond women with the entire eyebrow makeup world at their feet. Little do most of them know that I, and many other redheads like me, are faced with the dilemma of getting a product that’s a tad too brown and looking like Peter Gallagher fresh from his coma.

Yeah, I know I look good.

Yeah, I know I look good.

So I found myself at the mall this afternoon for the soon-mentioned second reason, and thought I’d stop in Sephora to see what they had. Short story? Nothing I was willing to risk on this ill-fated Monday, but I did talk to one of the cast members (so weird saying it) about my vampire porcelain skin. “She went in for eyebrow pencils and asked about foundation?” I know, just go with me here.

Did you know that they have a device called Skin ID, where they will literally scan parts of your face and match it to a Pantone-esque swatch? Well, now you know. Today I found out that I’m so pale, that my Skin ID is 1Y01. That’s Pantone for “find the lightest shade, and it’ll still be too dark.” The whole process though was very interesting. They scanned my face, uploaded the ID number, and up popped a list of popular foundations that match my swatch. I was even able to email it to myself for future reference.

Most of their foundations (ok- all of their foundations) where a little pricey for my budget, but let me tell you, they have some good customer service at that Sephora. There was something extremely pleasant about their cast members (still weird) going to great lengths to scan my face and show me how see-through I was. There also seems to be something empowering about knowing what shade of foundation truly matches your skin tone, whether you fork over the cash or not. I recommend trying it, it’ll at least make you feel a little Sasha Fierce.

Well, maybe a little less Sasha Fierce...

Well, maybe a little less Sasha Fierce…

 

Second “thank you”- my “thank you” to my mom.

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So a couple weeks back, my apartment had a little run-in with some bugs. Long story short, it was awful. I could not even stay in my apartment. So my parents, being the awesome people they are, let me stay on their couch for a couple days to regain my sanity. So the reason I found myself at the mall this afternoon was for a secret trip to James Avery to buy her a cute little charm to add to her bracelet. It’s a cute little house and they call it “Home Sweet Home,” a little way to say thanks for making me feel at home even when my home is about 5 minutes away.

It all worked out great, too. of course they wrapped it and I got a cute card and surprised her with it. I don’t mean to brag, but she loved it. Though, in hindsight, I kind of got her an errand, since she’ll have to take her bracelet in to get the charm added. Oops. Well, when she reads this part of the post (hi, mom), then she’ll realize this too and send me on the errand instead. Problem solved. (Oh, and my bug problem is solved too, just for the record)

Now, I’m not very good at giving advice apart from movie and TV recommendations, but if someone were to ask me my bad-day cure, I’d probably sum it up like this:

1. AC/DC Pandora Radio to rage dance your problems away

I can't explain why this helps, it just does

I can’t explain why this helps, it just does

2. Treat yo self (even if it’s just an ice cream or something)

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3. Do something nice for someone else

And watch them make this face

And watch them make this face

Trust me, all three of these have been road tested by me on more than one occasion, and they really do work. If I had to narrow it down to the most important one, it’d be number three, for sure. Just finding a way to do a nice thing for someone else, like complimenting a stranger on their awesome leopard shoes, for example, will make you feel much better. Their face lights up, you’re able to step out of your problems for a bit, it all works in your favor.

 

So I guess this day wasn’t a complete waste. And hey, I even got a blog post out of it. It had nothing to do with TV or movies, but oh well. My blog, my rules.

 

Besides, it might be for the best, since I lost all of my DVR recordings 😦

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‘Til next time!

 

 

 

 

I Miss My Weekend

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I am Kevin. Kevin is me.

It’s always weird coming back to work on Monday and having people ask me what I did over the weekend. I’m never sure if I should lie and sound like a productive adult, or come clean about catching up on Gossip Girl. For the record, even my most TV-filled weekends include the obligatory apartment cleaning, laundry, and grocery run, so I’m not some lame-o. My weekends just tend to include marathons of the TV variety.

 

This weekend’s theme: Guilty Pleasures.

aww yiss

aww yiss

Thanks, ABC Family, for playing  Step Up 1, 2, and 3(D) back-to-back on Saturday. I don’t know what sweet Siren song Channing Tatum’s hips are playing, but every time I see those movies on, I’m sucked it like a weak sailor.

Those hips don't lie

Those hips don’t lie

Also in true guilty pleasure fashion, Titanic was on all weekend. Of course I had to watch it. When I lived in Florida, it was probably on at least once a month. It was ridiculous. Between that and the constant reruns of Extreme Home Makeover, television was a roller-coaster of emotions.

She'll never let go!!

She’ll never let go!!

This weekend also marked the season-end of my summer hate-watch/guilty pleasure show- AMC’s Halt and Catch Fire. I talked about this a bit way back when on my family’s podcast thing, but after completing the season, I’m still not completely sure how I feel about it.

Scoot McNairy as Gordon Clark, Mackenzie Davis as Cameron Howe and Lee Pace as Joe MacMillan

Scoot McNairy as Gordon Clark, Mackenzie Davis as Cameron Howe and Lee Pace as Joe MacMillan

For those who aren’t in the know about Halt and Catch Fire, it’s set in the 1980’s in Texas’ Silicon Prairie. The show focuses on a fictional computer company building a faster, lighter, fiction-ier version of an IBM computer. The show stars Lee Pace, who some may remember as the Pie Maker, Ned, from Pushing Daisies (others may recognize him as the fabulous Thranduil in the Hobbit Trilogy, but whatever). Joining Pace’s Joe MacMillan on his technically-illegal quest are Gordon (Scoot McNairy), a face-in-the-crowd computer engineer, and Cameron (Mackenzie Davis), a young, female?!, computer prodigy.

In theory, this show sounds good, and for the most part it is. I’ve said it before, new shows have a lot they have to throw at you in the first few episodes to develop characters and plot lines, so it’s a lot for viewers to process all at once. Add to that the fact that this show has to live up to the precedents set by Breaking Bad, the Walking Dead, and Mad Men, and the pressure to possibly become the new “it” show.  I have no problem with any of that, though. The problem seems to be, like my aforementioned Black Box, that they have a prime opportunity to develop some butt-kicking females- who build computers – but they mainly just deal with stupid boys. For example, the first four episodes mainly consist of Cameron trying to get the guys on board with true-to-life graphics and interactive interfacing, to which Gordon replies “It’ll never be done!” (I say as I look for a moving image of a cat booping a dog on the nose.)

What a time to be alive.

What a time to be alive.

But I will give the show credit for getting better throughout the season and ending well. Cameron and Gordon’s wife Donna (Kerry Bishé) actually end up with better season 2 set-ups than their fellas. I guess my hate-watch show has started to grow on me, and I’m kind of looking forward to what the future holds, especially for Joe (because we all need more Lee Pace in our lives, IMO). In some of the final scenes of the finale, we see him hike off into the wooded sunset,

Joe hikes off towards the woods, into the sunset

And we all know what happens to him next:

#fabulous

#fabulous

Side note: In the finale, they reference the MacIntosh “1984” commercial that aired during the Superbowl, which you can watch here. Another interesting video I found was the footage of Steve Jobs unveiling the MacIntosh for the first time. Watch people lose their minds over paint and text-to-voice capabilities. Meanwhile, I yelled at my tablet for taking five seconds to load my Pinterest app. Watch this show and appreciate the fact that we are no longer in the technological dark-ages.

 

Other than that… have you seen Guardians of the Galaxy?????

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Marvel expands its universe (literally) with this new film that of five misfit heroes as they try to make some money, exact revenge, and save the galaxy- all in that order. Parks and Rec‘s Chris Pratt leads this group both in missions and comedy. This movie was very funny, in my opinion. I knew what I was getting myself into with Marvel’s typical cheekiness, but this on point and borderline parodical. Vin Diesel’s scene stealing Groot, a tree humanoid, was probably one of my favorites.

Who wouldn't love this little guy?!

Who wouldn’t love this little guy?!

As far as whether this movie is appropriate family-fare for all ages, I guess that would depend on your family. Just like its predecessors, the characters don’t shy away from the occasional choice phrases and innuendos, but that’ll fly past most kids’ heads. I will warn you, though, that any kid under the age of 12 will probably be parroting the phase “I am Groot” for the rest of the summer. The movie sports amazing visual and make-up effects, smart writing, and a solid soundtrack. It’s a summer blockbuster, do I really even need to make a case for it? Side note: Lee Pace (you know, from like ten seconds ago?) plays the weird bad guy. See also: Lee Pace + more + our lives, above.

 

During the previews they previewed Interstellar, Matthew McConaughey’s newest film about interstellar space exploration that was one of the “cool kids” of Comic-Con. It looks good, but my weird fear of space has me kind of saying “Oh no, oh no, oh no….” (hah, McConaughey reference)

But really, I'll probably pass

But really, I’ll probably pass

 

Ugh, my weekend already seems like it’s a year away. Let’s go back to those simpler times, where real pants weren’t required and no one request read receipts on their emails.

Seriously- don't request them. You're not the president.

Seriously- don’t request them. You’re not the president.

 

The New Olympics Commercial Will Have You Feeling All the Feels…

I’m doing lunch coverage at the front desk for my office, which means I can try to power through a blog post! Whoo hoo!

Now, I love my DVR, and I never typically watch commercials, but last night as I was finishing my Golden Globes post I let the commercials play through on the Intelligence Pilot from last week. What caught my attention were some commercials that were pretty emotional, and I thought I’d write a quick thing about them.

I don’t know if you are on to P & G Brands’ game, but the parent company of brands such as Tide and Dove know exactly who to target with their audience and how to do it. Quite obviously, P & G recognizes their main buyers are women, more specifically than that, their buyers are likely moms. As a sponsor of this year’s Winter Olympic Games, they started airing their new commercial with the Team USA logo attached. Take a second and watch:

This one is on Proctor & Gamble’s offical YouTube account with a description reading: “For teaching us that falling only makes us stronger. For giving us the encouragement to try again. Thank you, Mom.”

Their channel is also filled with athlete profiles thanking their moms for all they’ve done throughout the athlete’s journey. Many feels on the P & G YouTube account and on their corresponding Facebook Fan Page.

But I wasn’t too surprised that they aired a Mom-oriented campaign for the Olympics. Think back to the Summer Olympics in London last year and you’ll probably remember your heart swelling from this commercial by, guess who:

“The hardest job in the world, the best job in the world. Thank you, mom.” Are you crying yet? P & G went for the emotional jugular with their ad campaign, but I think it’s working out well for them. There’s another one that’s also good, here, but I didn’t want to make this too video heavy. Watch it though, it’s cute, too.

But if those commercials didn’t get you the first time around, Microsoft is prepared to get you. Or, at least, their plan is to inspire you. They lauched this new commercialrecently:

“These heroic women show what spirit, courage, and perseverance can achieve. May their bravery inspire us in 2014 and beyond,” is the description added to their official YouTube video. How exciting to see such a positive ad for women to see, both young and old. It definitely inspired me. Dr. Deborah Koehn was a delightful story to hear about, too (if you have now idea what I’m talking about, watch a thing about it here).

I definitely think that’s a great way to kick off the year. Some really great commercials that don’t offend, only uplift. It’s kind of nice that, since we can’t escape the commercials, at least we can enjoy ourselves and get inspired. The responsible ad agencies should be proud of their work, I know I would be. How about you, one reader from Vermont, do you have a favorite commercial from last year?

Now, excuse me, I feel like I should go call my momma… 🙂

It’s Awards Season, y’all!

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I cannot confirm or deny that I was drifting off at my desk because I stayed up way too late last night catching up on my Golden Globes and my stories. Today is definitely one of those days that I wish I didn’t give up caffeine cold turkey, but super glad I’m keeping up with movies and TV. I tell you what, last night did not disappoint!

Before I get too far down the Globes rabbit hole, let me quickly break to say this- DOWNTON!!!!!!! I’ll do a different post about that, because this episode had some very polarizing opinions about the storyline, but I, personally, thought it was one of the best episodes of the show. It’s about time Julian Fellowes shook that house up with things besides first world, who’s-going-to-dress-me-now? problems. Again, my opinion, but whatever.

Now- back to the task at hand. The Golden Globes were so glamorous! Well, mostly glamorous (I’m throwing shade at you, Paula Patton). The night was so glamorous, a pipe literally exploded with anticipation. Yes, there was actually a pipe that burst and flooded the red carpet, causing some brawny firemen to work to quickly clean up. But everything worked out, and luckily no gorgeous dresses were harmed in the process, though some dresses probably SHOULD have been harmed… (see: Paula Patton, shade)

mmm... gross.

mmm… gross.

The night got off to a great start with the beautiful Tina Fey and Amy Poehler’s opening remarks. I liked the now much quoted explanation of Gravity as “a story where George Clooney would rather float of into space and die, than spend another minute with a woman his own age…” *cut to Sandra Bullock laughing her butt off*. For some reason though I loved the joke “American Hustle, or as it was known by it’s working title: Explosion at a Wig Factory.” Also, Amy Poehler poked fun at herself a bit with the help of Jennifer Lawrence, and everyone knows that a celebrity making fun of themselves is never not funny.

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The night got off to a sweet start with Jennifer Lawrence winning Best Supporting Actress- Comedy/Musical. Hooray! And Nicholas Hoult was there to give her a congratulatory smooch- adorbs!

Be still, my X-Men loving heart

Be still, my X-Men loving heart

She didn’t even fall on her way up to receive her award this time, even though she looked like she was doing a glamorous cosplay of New Legs Ariel. Everyone is hating on her dress, though! Oh well. I thought it was simple and pretty. She’s a young girl who is known for doing what she wants, and I think she probably loved the dress. There were plenty of other young actresses who made worse dress choices than her (Emma Stone and Zooey Deschanel). Congrats to Jennifer Lawrence on her win, her on-again man, and for doing what she wants and not giving a hoot. You go girl.

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Where’s her dinglehopper?

Congrats to Jacqueline Bisset on her overdue win with Best Supporting Actress- TV/Mini Series, but what was going on? I’m in agreement with everyone’s confusion on her long and drawn out acceptance speech and will admit I got up to grab some more wine only to make it back in time for her to power through the walk off music and continue going. I can only imagine the poor souls in the control room trying to figure out what’s going on: “Okay, play the music. Alright, lady, wrap it up… she’s not going anywhere… she beat the music? Play it again, louder.” Awkward….

Behind the Candelabra wins for both the lead actor and best miniseries. No surprise there. While I wanted American Horror Story: Coven to win, I knew they could not beat the taught-faced, piano phenom and his boy toy. It was a good movie though, so I was excited to see them win, even if Michael Douglas’s win was overshadowed in my mind with his throat cancer deal late last year *shudders*.

ugh... throat cancer

ugh… throat cancer

Elisabeth Moss came out of nowhere with her win for Best Actress in a TV/Mini Series. Another you go girl goes out to her. I love her on Mad Men, and even though I have not seen Top of the Lake, I’m sure she’s great in that too, obviously. Jessica Lange did not look happy to be beaten by the underdog this year, but oh well. Shout out for Moss’s dress- so beautiful- and her sassy little cut. Long side glance at Lange’s dress though for looking like a carpet bag… (just saying)

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Sad dress :(

She had an uncredited role as the carpet bag in Saving Mr. Banks

Margot Robbie truly did have a breakout performance in The Wolf of Wall Street this year. It was kind of weird to think back to her shy little character on the short-lived Pan Am and see her show-stopping look last night. Poor girl got hazed though when the teleprompter apparently cued the wrong presenter’s part. Nice to see that Jonah Hill can’t even be spontaneously funny in times like that. Oh wait, not funny… what’s the word… oh yeah- sad.

Jonah you were no help.

Jonah, you were no help.

And now I can finally talk about shade-worthy Paula Patton’s dress. It reminded me of a Georgia O’Keefe painting, to the point where, when I first saw it, I thought, “I haven’t been to the Fine Arts Museum in a while…”

Seriously, what is happening here?

Seriously, what is happening here?

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Which is the painting and which is the dress??

Shade was thrown at that weird shoulder vagina thing and I only broke it to laugh at her oddly ironic joke. Did you miss it? Aaron Eckhart, who joined her in presenting, said something along the lines of “A drug dealer, a psychopath, and a sex addict…” and Paula chimes in with, “Sounds like my kind of man!” Yeah, Mrs. Robin Thicke, we all are reminded that any time “Blurred Lines” comes on the radio. I wonder how much the writers enjoyed writing that joke, I’m sure I’d put that one on my résumé. Anyways, Bryan Cranston won the well-deserved title of Best Actor in a TV Series- Drama for final season as Walter White. And he got to stick around as Breaking Bad won it for Best TV Series- Drama. I especially liked them thanking the fans for sticking with them during their less-formidable seasons in the show’s beginnings, that was very nice to say.

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Alex Ebert and his hipster ‘do won for Best Original Film Score. And Bono and crew won for Best Original Song. I thought that was pretty special because they did work with Mandela for many years, so, as they said, they were writing from the heart. *small feels*

But the highlight of all of that was P. Diddy (Sean Combs? I’m not cool enough to know what name he goes by now) being more awkward than I have ever been in my lifetime. I write a blog called “The Awkward Redhead,” so I know I’m awkward, but I have never been on that Bono-Diddy hug level. Those awkward hug moments make my night. Honestly, you can catch up on all of the acceptance speeches and winners any time following the awards, but what you’re really missing are the candid moments with the awkward hugs and unanswered high-fives. Truly the most magical moment of award shows…

I live for these moments

I live for these moments

Jon Voight looked like the old man at the beginning of Phantom of the Opera as he robbed Aaron Paul of the Golden Globe for Best Supporting Actor- TV/Mini Series.

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Christine…. Christine….

Aaron Paul was robbed, I say! And so does, like, all of the internet honestly. But as upset as I was about it, when they showed Liev Shreiber looking so proud of his TV dad, I quickly stopped yelling at my TV. (Just in time to riff on that scarf!) Side note- Amber Heard had a lot going on with herself last night. She’s such a pretty woman, but that eye makeup aged her and that weird pompadour was just… weird… I could have done with just my favorite TV firefighters, Taylor Kinney and Jesse Spencer. Fun Fact: Taylor Kinney is dating Lady Gaga and Jesse Spencer is actually Australian, as evident by his wonderful accent. Both of these are facts my mom did not know, so that could also be a fun fact for you.

Spencer, left, Kinney, right

Spencer, left, Kinney, right

I’m really glad Amy Adams chose a deep plunge dress for the evening, or else people might not have recognized her as she accepted her award for Best Actress in a Movie- Comedy or Musical. But all kidding aside, she was wonderful in American Hustle, deep plunges and all. She was also great in Spike Jonze’s Her, so this award only helped reassure her that she is doing amazing work and to just continue doing what she’s doing. She looked, as always, and was just as equally charming. I want to meet her and just talk about the shared plights of redheads everywhere. Congrats to Robert Downey Jr. too, I guess, for apparently getting to keep his tux. At least that’s what he said, in his weird intro, would happen if Amy Adams won.

a-mah-zing

a-mah-zing

ROBIN WRIGHT WON BEST ACTRESS! Well, in a TV series- Drama, at least. I’m so happy for this one because she was on my wish list of winners for the evening. Granted, on my wish list she shared the win with the amazing Tatiana Maslany of Orphan Black (more on that show in blog posts to come), but win nonetheless. She looked adorable as she ran up to the stage and stunning as she said her thank yous. House of Cards is such a great show (more on that in other posts, as well). If you have not seen it yet, you have plenty of time to watch the first season on Netflix before it’s Season 2 premiere on Valentine’s Day. Hop to it!

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Of course Jared Leto won the Golden Globe for Best Supporting Actor- Motion Picture. Of course I thought Bradley Cooper was amazing in American Hustle, and I would never turn down a moment to see more of Michael Fassbender, but Jared Leto was apparently amazing in Dallas Buyers Club. I say “apparently,” because it’s next on my must watch list, but I have not see it yet. Still, based on his other stuff, I’m sure it truly is amazing. I’m excited to watch it.

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You win the Man Scarf Awards, too

I now take this moment to pause and recognize my love for Emma Thompson. I mean, seriously, she looked so beautiful, just like she has for all of the Saving Mr. Banks press tour. It’s always a treasure to see her do anything, so I was happy to see her tonight, too. She came on stage, heels in one hand, martini in the other, and reminded us of the incredible task writers have to bring our beloved stories to life. She threw her shoes over her shoulder, exchanged her martini for the envelope, and congratulated Spike Jonze on his win for Best Screenplay-Motion Picture.

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I was so excited to see Jonze’s newest film, Her, win this award. I loved this movie, probably my favorite out of the award season. I’ll have more on the movie soon, until then, trust me on my word that it’s good. Go see it.

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You are as beautiful as your films, sir

On the tails of my excitement came Andy Samberg’s win for Best Actor in a TV Series- Comedy. I am so happy to see this new show become so successful. I felt like there was a looming cloud over the Fox show, since the network doesn’t have a great track record for their live-action comedies (pour one out for Breaking In, The Loop, and even Arrested Development). But this show is doing great! What made Samberg’s unexpected win even better was the bromance between his former SNL costar and him. So adorable.

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Poor Despicable Me 2 and The Croods didn’t even stand a chance against Frozen. While all three movies were very enjoyable, and great for audiences, Disney and Pixar usually have this category locked. Congrats on the Best Animated Feature Film, Frozen! Let’s go build a snowman! Side note: Captain Kirk is always a welcomed sight, and Emma Watson’s dress/pantsuit was beautiful. The gown version of a snuggie, but beautiful.

It's like a little baby unicorn

It’s like a little baby unicorn

As much as I love Woody Allen and his films, and I truly do, his lifetime achievement award portion was kind of weird, as most of the typically are. Emma Stone looked like she was channeling someone in between Annie Hall and Woody Allen in that weird outfit, but I liked it from the top up, if that makes any difference… And Diane Keaton was her usual self, so no surprise when she started to sing the Girl Scouts song. I actually thought her part was kind of sweet, due to the fact the two have been friends longer than I have been alive. So moving on…

Best Motion Picture Comedy went to American Hustle, like I thought it would, though I was hoping Her would win. Either way, I enjoyed them both.

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Alfonso Cuaron rightfully won Best Director for Gravity. I haven’t had the chance to see it, partly because I’m still recovering from my terrible Astronomy class last semester, but I also have not had the chance. Still, well deserved win for him.

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Now the important part- Leonardo DiCaprio FINALLY WON Best Actor in a Motion Picture- Comedy or Musical. Took them long enough. He even took time to honor Bruce Dern’s body of work in his speech and thank Martin Scorscese for the influence he’s had on Leo’s career. Wonderfully done, Leo. While The Wolf of Wall Street is a little too much for me, it was excellently made and led by an amazing actor. Another well deserved, if not long overdue, win. Odds are in your favor for Oscar, Leo!

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About dang time

Another great, and overdue, win for Best Actor in a Motion Pricture- Drama for Matthew McConaughey. I especially liked the “Alright, alright, alright…” as he walked up to the mic, throwing it back to his role on Dazed and Confused. (Geez, the amount of movie trivia I know off the top of my head… someone pay me for it, please).

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Shortly following his win, Cate Blanchett looked stunning, as usual, as she won the award for Best Actress in a Motion Picture- Drama. I’m excited to see Blue Jasmine, I’ve heard so many great things about it. I just wish Woody Allen was there to actually get all the recognition coming his way.

My underdog, Brooklyn Nine-Nine won Best TV Series- Comedy or Musical (hooray!) and the always lovely Amy Poehler won Best Actress in a TV Series- Comedy or Musical, finally. A lot of finally’s tonight HFA, great job! Amy even made out with Bono before heading up to accept her award- bucket list check and check…

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I’m very happy to see her win. She was great on SNL and she’s great on Parks and Rec. Another deserved win for the evening.

Last, but certainly not least, the Best Motion Picture- Drama was awarded to 12 Years a Slave. A surprised Steve McQueen made his way up to the stage to say his sweet thank yous to all who helped him. His sweet reaction to his win was a pleasant way to end the evening.

Thanks, Sarah Paulson, for making sure he thanked everyone

Thanks, Sarah Paulson, for making sure he thanked everyone

Phew! What a night. Not that anyone will care that this is so late after the awards, but I did have a real person job I had to do today. What did y’all think of the awards and the movies honored? Give me your thoughts! 🙂

Oh- and I cannot talk about the Globes without mention this lovely pic:

All the yes's

All the yes’s

That’s right, internet, that is Michael Fassbender and Benedict Cumberbatch dancing to Notorious B.I.G. at an after party.

Emma Thompson approves

Emma Thompson approves

10 Reasons Why NBC’s Hannibal is the Craziest Show You Probably Aren’t Watching

And by crazy, I mean crazy awesome…

Look at these beautiful people.

NBC ordered up a second helping of the sinister serial killer prequel this past May, but with only a reported 4.7 million viewers, according to Nielson, it was one of the lowest rated shows to be renewed. While it’s low viewership might be modest for live viewing, Nielson reports that it continues to gain viewers during the week with DVR playbacks. It’s number one in DVR viewership, averaging a 77% increase each week with them. Having watched it from the first week with the pilot, and finally catching the finale (stupid work and obligations keeping me from TV…) I don’t think any of my friends are watching this, and it’s too crazy to just ignore. So, strangers, here are 10 reasons that NBC’s Hannibal is the craziest show you aren’t watching.

1. This is Hugh Dancy:

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He’s British; you may know him as the adorable Luke Brandon on Confessions of a Shopaholic, and don’t even get me started on his character Lee on “The Big C” (go watch it- bring tissues). He plays the behavior specialist Will Graham, who can understand serial killers in ways that Morpheus cannot (more on that later).

2. This is Mads Mikkelsen:

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He’s Dutch and cheekbone-y. You might know him as Le Chiffre, Bond’s nemesis in Casino Royale or as the eye patch bad guy if you were one of the ten people who watch the newest Three Musketeers film. He plays Doctor Hannibal Lector: the even-paced psychiatrist by day, sinister serial killer by night. He helps Will Graham process his thoughts about the killer du jour. (Random trivia: He and Hugh Dancy are equally billed in the shows credits, their names alternating top-billed each episode).

3. Hannibal doesn’t only consist of Hannibal’s killings.

This person buried people alive to culture fungi- WHUT?!

This person buried people alive to culture fungi- WHUT?!

Yes, Dr. Hannibal’s crazy cannibal ways are an underlying plot line for the show, but there’s more to it. Hannibal is a good show for anyone who watches CSI, Criminal Minds, or Law & Order, and wish they would up the ante just a little bit. Each week NBC’s Behavior Analysis Unit comes across a new, twisted murderer, and the only person apparently competent enough to find the killer is Graham. In one episode, the killer played a victim’s vocal chords like a cello- your move CSI

4. Morpheus is in it, and he gets angry a lot.

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He plays Jack Crawford, head of the BAU, and he’s got quite a temper at times. There’s a scene in the pilot where he yells at a random guy in a bathroom. What a fun way to introduce his character! Later in the season, you start to find out reasons behind his anger, but Fishburne does keep his whole team focused as they deal with all of the crazy mass murderers apparently roaming the city. I mean, seriously, DO NOT travel to Baltimore. I wish I could find the bathroom clip, but this clip kind of gives you a general idea of Jack and Will’s characters.

5.  The dark humor.

Let's eat Grandma! Let's eat, Grandma!

Let’s eat Grandma! Let’s eat, Grandma!

The show is about a cannibal with a penchant for dinner parties. The double entendres soaking in dramatic irony will drive you crazy at times, but you can’t get enough of it. Also note the food porn in this show. You get some serious kitchen envy until you quickly remember he’s cooking human. It’s always human.

6. Ellen Muth shows up later in the season.

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Remember her from Dead Like Me? It’s not surprising she showed up, since the the show’s creator, Bryan Fuller, also created Dead Like Me. Not to spoil anything in the season, but she shows up for a couple episodes and it’s just enough time to make you want to start campaigning to bring Dead Like Me back for a reboot. Can I get an “amen”? (Side note: watch Dead Like Me if you haven’t)

7. The Fannibals.

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Seriously, the Fannibals. The show’s fans have lovingly named their clan and they are just awesome.  They came out of nowhere, banding together while the other fandoms slept, apparently. I’m part of what many people call the “Big Three” fandoms (Doctor Who, Supernatural, and Sherlock, for those not in the know) and the Fannibals came in so quickly and with numbers so large it started to scare the Big Three a little bit. And they’re holding there own out there now. I’ll admit that I’m currently a wallflower Fannibal, but I’m enjoying their beautiful and sometimes hilarious fan art and Tumblr posts. Eventually I’ll start to inch in towards the center of the room… You can also see this Buzzfeed post from May about the Fannibals.

8. The cast and creators are amazing.

These guys

These guys, and Zac Levi.

The Fannibals started a few different tropes for the show. One of the big ones involves antlers- the Ravenstag, as the Fannibals have named it, is a hallucination of a feathered stag that frequents the show. Another was the flower crown meme/motif that showed up over the summer all over the internet (and even made its way to real life music festivals). At San Diego Comic-Con this past summer, the show’s showrunners actually joined in on the flower crown and antler fun with their fans. If you take the time to watch even part of their Nerd HQ panel on YouTube, you see show creator, Bryan Fuller, talk to some of the Fannibals in the audience by their names, or at least their online handles, and even accepts their flower crown gifts. He and Hugh Dancy proceed to finish the panel wearing said flower crowns. Dancy continues to amuse them by saying his oft-quoted “This is my design” line from the show. Honestly, the fact that the cast and creators are so cool with their fans, makes me just want to be a fan of the show. They’re good people, so you know the show will be good. Well, as good as a show about a city filled with deranged murderers can be.

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9. The controversy.

That might not be the right word, but you know what I mean. There was an entire episode that didn’t air in the US. The lost episode involved a “family” of killers, with some children being killed and others doing the killing. It was slated to air around the time of the sad Sandy Hook shootings, and many felt that it was best to not show that so soon after. You’re able to find it online now, and in hindsight, I didn’t think it was really a great episode. Nothing happened in it that made you miss continuing storylines for the overall season, and the main guest star, SNL’s Molly Shannon, was weird as a killer mom. If you miss it, you really don’t miss anything. The fact that it was a lost episode was more mysterious than the episode itself.

meh.

meh.

Oh- and the show has been banned in Utah. It was deemed too gruesome for the citizens of Utah after just four episodes.

10. The potential.

Oh the potential!! First of all, the original Hannibal Lector, Anthony Hopkins, is rumored to guest in the upcoming season. I could stop there and that’d be enough, in my opinion, but there’s more. The Tenth Doctor, David Tennant, auditioned for the role of Hannibal (could you even imagine?!) and while he obviously did not get the part, Bryan Fuller apparently was so impressed by him that he said he wanted to write a part for Tennant to play. Other possible guest stars include Lee Pace and Chi McBride, from Fuller’s gone-to-soon show Pushing Daisies, who might potentially play characters from the books. I’m planning on watching the next season just on the off chance I get to see Ten turn into a crazy serial killer, and one can never have too much of the Pie Maker in their lives.

Remember when he was in Harry Potter and this was a thing?

Remember when he was in Harry Potter and this was a thing?

Unfortunately, I’m not too sure where you can watch the first season right now. Maybe Hulu Plus? Why not test out a free trial and catch the season. I believe it’s also availble on DVD, if not now, then soon, which would also give it Netflix potential. The new season is slated to start early in the new year, February, I believe. I’m sure in the weeks leading up to it, NBC will have last season’s episodes available for Fannibals new and old.

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And hey, whether you like the show or not, one thing you can take away from this show is that you should never travel to Baltimore. Apparently the streets are running rampant with serial killers. Oh, and the food there- it’s probably human.

It’s time to say goodbye to 2013…

Believe it or not, there are only about 4 days left in the year 2013. How messed up is that, huh? For some people, they hear their year is quickly coming to an end and it makes them get their butts into gear with that New Year’s resolution they abandoned on January 5th. (If you’re doing it when the year ends, it still counts, right??) But some people, like me, tend to hear that number and think “Man, I could go for a nap.” All the impending activities make me tired just thinking about them. Plus, so many movies came out this year. Some were really good, others were really bad, while even more probably slipped by under your radar.

So in the spirit of not doing things, and getting some 2013 movies off of your watch list before the year closes, I have compiled a list for you of some movies that might have slipped past you unnoticed. Here they are, in no particular order. Enjoy!

1.  Frances Ha.

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This black-and-white indie was written and stars Greta Gerwig (Greenburg, Arthur), as the titular character who is trying to find her way in New York City. The 27-year-old spends most of the film struggling to make ends meet while working as a dance apprentice, and tries to keep a best friendship with her roommate Sophie (played by Mickey Sumner, Sting’s daughter). The movie was well-received by critics, scoring a 93% on Rotten Tomatoes. I agree with critics that the movie, overall, was good, but as a 23-year-old woman trying to balance work, art, and a living wage, an hour and a half of someone just a few years older than me “doing her best” seemed to hit too close to home sometimes. Despite this, there were small moments sprinkled throughout the movie that kept me onboard. I recommend this for anyone who is missing Lena Dunham and her Girls crew. One, because Adam Driver has a supporting role, and because Frances is very “Hannah-esque.” Another plus, it’s on Netflix streaming.

2. Parkland.

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This movie has everyone in it. Not, like, Crash, everyone, but it has a lot of familiar faces. Marcia Gay Harden (Mona Lisa Smile, Whip It, etc.), Zac Efron, Colin Hanks (Tom Hanks’s son), and the noted return of Tom Welling (Smallville). The film follows some of the doctors, Secret Service agents, and the Oswald family at the time of John F. Kennedy’s assassination. Some notable featured characters include Paul Giamatti’s Anthony Zapruder, who was the man behind the lens of the Zapruder film, the only known footage of the shooting. Efron and Hanks play the doctors at Parkland Hospital (hence, the title) who worked on Kennedy. Rotten Tomatoes compiled their score at a low 43%, citing incoherent  narratives that don’t live up to their potential for such a weighty subject. While I agree with the general thoughts behind most of the critiques, I think Parkland has to offer. The overall concept of retelling that sad day’s events from the perspective of others involved is intriguing enough to keep people watching to see how the events unfold for them. I would recommend this movie for history buffs, like myself. The well-known historic events make the plot obvious, of course, but like I said you’ll be more curious to the individuals lives following the event once the movie starts. Another, albeit shallow, plus: Tom Welling is back, and he’s looking good.

3. Pacific Rim.

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This might be a very mainstream movie to add to a list of movies you might have missed in 2013, but Pacific Rim actually was not as popular domestically as it was internationally. In efforts of diversifying the list, there might be a high chance you haven’t seen Pacific Rim yet. It didn’t do remarkably great in ratings, receiving only 72% freshness on Rotten Tomatoes, but it has the same kind of drawing power that movies like Transformers and Marvel franchise movies do (think, big fights, muscle-y men, tight pants). Set in the future, it revolves around pilots of giant-scale robots that fight off aliens that emerge from rifts in the ocean floors. It stars the Christian Grey that could have been, Charlie Hunnam (Sons of Anarchy) as a former robot pilot who is convinced to come back to the life by Idris Elba (Luther, Thor) and help save the day. It has the action side for the guys and the sexiness of all sorts of men for the ladies. Find it on Redbox for a nice night in with your guy. Added points for Charlie Day as Dr. Newton Geiszler, half of the science duo in the film who kind of saves the day.

4. The Internship.

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This is a buddy comedy that’s a little different than some we’re probably used to. Vince Vaughn and Owen Wilson reunite as two aging salesmen who get thrown back into the changing landscape of the workforce after being laid off. They become interns at Google, where they begin to see the difference between their generation and the next. Mix in a competition element and a love interest for Wilson, cook for two hours, and you get this kind of heart warming movie. I’ll just be honest and say it only averaged 35% on Rotten Tomatoes, with one critic relating Vaughn and Wilson’s soft sided comedy to Eddie Murphy’s turn towards family oriented comedies. I’ll just say that I do agree that this is pretty soft compared to their other films. If you’re looking for a semi-sequel to Wedding Crashers, look somewhere else, but if you want to watch two middle-age men lead a group of socially awkward programmers through an underdog story, then watch it. If you liked Old School, but want a break from some of the crassness, then you’d like this movie. Oh, I forgot to mention that Dylan O’Brien, the sarcastically loveable Stiles from Teen Wolf, is one of the said socially awkward programmers, so lots of screen time for him. If your life has been lacking some Stiles lately, then let this be your fix. Frugal plus: it’s available at Redbox now, so if you have a promo code then use it on this and you won’t be mad if you don’t end up liking it.

5. The Way Way Back.

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This coming of age story was written and directed by the same duo who brought us The Descendants, for which they won an Oscar. This film has a star-studded cast that includes Steve Carrell (The Office), Toni Collette (Little Miss Sunshine), and Allison Janney (Juno), and the writers know how to use every single one of their collective talents. While the general story has been told many times under different titles, this cast keeps you from really noticing or caring. Each one knows how to work off of the other’s energy to create a great dynamic all around. Rotten Tomatoes gave this one a solid 89% with critics noting the same cast dynamic and the quick-wit of the writers that kept this oft-told tale going. I recommend this for those who liked The Descendants, of course, or anyone who enjoyed the indie ease of Away We Go and movies of the like. Honorable mention: Liam James, who fans of Psych will recognize as young Shawn, gets his first main role, and he plays the part of awkward teen pretty well. You go, Liam. There’s also this deleted scene featuring the gem that is Maya Rudolph:

6. The World’s End.

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If you’re a fan of Simon Pegg (Star Trek) and his band of merry men, then chances are you’ve probably seen this movie. If that’s the case, then move along, nothing to see here. But if you haven’t seen this movie yet, then stick around, I’ll tell you about it. This buddy comedy centers around Gary and his old friends reuniting in their hometown to finish a famous, and incomplete, pub crawl. Now, this movie is by the same crew that brought us Shaun of the Dead and Hot Fuzz, so there’s a sci-fi twist element to the whole story, so keep that in mind. That, of course, makes sense, because this is the third installment of the “Cornetto Trilogy,” which includes those other two movies. This third Cornetto film received a promising 89% on Rotten Tomatoes (Shaun and Hot Fuzz both scored 91%) and was well-received by critics who especially enjoyed Simon Pegg, Nick Frost, and the rest of the supporting cast- like Bilbo Baggins, himself, Martin Freeman. Obviously, if you were a fan of the other two Cornetto movies, then you’ll like this movie. I would also recommend this for any anglophiles out there and anyone who can’t get enough Scotty or Watson in their lives. If you don’t know who those two people are, then you probably don’t want more of them in your lives and might not enjoy this movie. If that’s the case, then continue on, nothing more to see here….

7. The To Do List.

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You might have seen this one, especially if you’re a fan of Aubrey Plaza of Parks and Rec. This throwback comedy has Plaza playing Brandy, the do-good high school valedictorian spending her summer, um, expanding her sexual horizons (I guess that’s a tactful way to describe it). She makes a list of sexual experiences she needs to have before her freshman year of college. Comedy, of course, ensues as she tries to maneuver through her sexual journey in 1993 Boise, Idaho. Yes, that’s correct, it’s set in the 90s and there are throwback references galore. Honorable mentions to the Avengers‘ Clark Gregg and Nashville’s Connie Britton playing Brandy’s tight-laced father and the more open-minded mother, respectively. It scored just 52% on Rotten Tomatoes, but even a majority of the critics say Plaza’s usual dead-pan helped this get somewhere. While I tend to agree with their general opinions, I’d consider myself open-minded enough to give this movie a shot, especially if you’re in your early twenties, like me. This movie is good if you liked the female-driven comedy of Bridesmaids and the sexual coming-of-age tale brought to you by movies like Sex Drive and American Pie. It’s also fun for anyone missing 90s music: think, Marky Mark and the Funky Bunch and the Cranberries.

8. What Maisie Knew.

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This movie is based on the Henry James novel of the same name and centers around young Maisie who is innocently in the center of her parents’ rough custody battle. Featuring a cast that includes Julianne Moore (The Kids Are All Right), Steve Coogan (Tropic Thunder), and Aleksander Skarsgard (True Blood) all of whom play their characters amazingly. Critics agree with their skills and the movie averaged a fresh 88% on Rotten Tomatoes. Sometimes the film’s deft storytelling of a modern broken family gets a little too real, but that only attests to the abilities of said cast. Anyone who enjoyed Moore’s job in The Kids are All Right, Coogan’s performance in Our Idiot Brother, or is just completely in love with Aleksander Skarsgard, should see this movie. Extra points: Alexander Skarsgard’s dynamic with young Onata Aprile will make your ovaries explode. See here: Oh, and it’s on Netflix streaming, so it’s not too difficult to get

9. The East.

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This film was co-written by the lead actress Brit Marling, who has written other lesser-known films. I can’t speak for the other films, but this one was an impressive introduction. The film is a corporate espionage film, and while that sort of film has been done a few times too many, I think they save it a little bit with some of the main characters. Marling stars as Sarah, and undercover intelligence worker who is assigned to infiltrate an eco-terrorist/anarchist group who is seeking justice for wrongs done by corporations worldwide (think, Exxon Valdez injustice). They’re eye-for-an-eye law is followed throughout the film as you watch Marling struggle between the job and the social injustices she witnesses. Overall, it’s a good, current film that can, at times, challenge you to be a better person. Rotten Tomatoes gave it a 75%, with many critics giving Marling kudos for both her acting and her writing. I recommend this for anyone who enjoyed The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo and those sort of movies- it has the same sort of cinematography and harshness of the story. It’s available on Redbox, so have yourself a suspenseful movie night. Added plus: Alexander Skarsgard is the leader of the titular group.

10. Disconnect.

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This is probably the lowest flying movie on the 2013 radar. I had the opportunity to see a screening of this movie, and I’m glad that I did, or else I probably would have missed it myself. The story follows four different story-lines that all connect with each other (think Crash or, on the opposite end of the spectrum, Love Actually). Arrested Development‘s Jason Bateman has a serious role as a lawyer and father whose son is cyberbullied by classmates. When the son attempts suicide, Bateman goes on a journey to understand his son’s life and what led him to it. Alexander Skarsgard (see also: numbers eight and nine) plays husband to Mrs. Robin Thicke, Paula Patton, who have their identity stolen and are trying to pick up those pieces. The four story-lines emotionally show us how connected and disconnected society has become thanks to technology. While it only averaged 68% on Rotten Tomatoes, but the cast’s performaces keep it moving when the story gets too melodramatic. I personally enjoy seeing funny guys play more serious roles- Will Ferrell in Stranger than Fiction and Steve Carrell in Dan in Real Life, for example- so seeing Bateman play this more serious part was right up my alley. If you liked Crash then I would recommend this movie. I’m sure it’s at Redbox now, and it’s probably on track for joining Netflix soon, too. It’s good enough to take the time to watch, and it might make you want to take a technology break even for just an evening. Added plus: How weird would it be for me to include Alexander Skarsgard as an added plus again? Don’t fight it, just have an Alexander Skarsgard-themed movie night. You know you want to.

Well, there you go, guys. You have about four days to catch up on these movies before we wrap up the year. Of course, you can always watch these after the new year, but where’s the fun in that? I resolve to watch more movies and TV in the coming year and write more posts that I’m sure my mom will enjoy.

Have fun and happy New Year, everyone!  🙂